Impressing customers should be a high priority goal in your small business. After all, the more you can do for them, the more they’re going to do for you. Free word of mouth advertising, bringing in repeat custom, leaving helpful and positive reviews for other potential customers to benefit from – it all adds up in the end!
That’s why you should continually strive to improve your business in areas regarding customer experience. It’s not enough to just be professional; you’ve got to prove you’re the best business for their purposes, up to and after they’ve gone through the checkout. As such, here are the elements that matter when you’re thinking about refining the service you offer.
Where They Can Find You
The bigger your online presence, the easier you’re going to be to find. Potential customers and returning customers alike won’t have to go far to see what you’re currently offering, or to find contact details to get straight in touch with you.
Make sure this element is signposted well on your website; have your phone number or email address plainly available for all to see, and include a link to your social media profiles for easy access there too.
As the online world gets bigger, try to match this in your own respective size. For example, more and more businesses are using TikTok to bring attention their way, which was unheard of two to three years ago. Match this style and try new things in your marketing to help a customer make their way over without even needing to try.
The Usability of Your Website
Quality web design really speaks for itself. This is something you should invest in from day one, no matter the size of your budget. When someone has a smooth online experience, that’s what they’re going to expect from every facet of your company here on out. That’s a good impression, and one that’s going to make you a lot of money!
Routinely test your website to ensure customers are landing where they need to and getting the information they need from you. It’s not just about pushing products in their face, no matter how sales driven you really are. You want them to feel like spending time surfing through all your pages, and a clear understanding of UI and brand expectations will help you to create a website that feels good to use.
How You Treat Returning Customers
Do you recognise the loyalty in your current customer base? When you start recognising someone’s name on the delivery label, or you’ve taken to chatting to someone because they walk into your store multiple times a week, you should do something to reward them.
The way you treat returning customers is very important in the current shopping generation. More and more of them have little to no brand loyalty and simply shop wherever is cheapest to do so!
So when you do get someone who comes back time and time again, hand out something to make their efforts worth it. A loyalty card that provides a proper discount, or an exclusive membership card that means they can get something free every time they shop with you. The more you reward this kind of behaviour, the more your generosity is going to market your shop for you.
The Way Your Employees Act
Your employees are representatives of your business. When they’re on the job, they need to act in the exact way you want them to, give or take a bit of wiggle room. After all, the customer isn’t right every single time!
But outside of these boundaries, how can you ensure that your employees give back to the patrons that have made you a success? It’s all about the training you provide.
Acting in customer interests, being able to service the checkout with little issue, and making sure to handle customer disputes effectively are three things every employee should know how to do. If they’re the only one on shift, you want to be sure you can trust them to see the sales process through to the end.
What You Do Differently
What makes you different from the company a street over that offers the exact same service as you? This is the number one question to define your customer experience by. Why should people come to you and not them? If you don’t know how to answer that question, they never will either!
So, what makes you the better business to come to? This is where your customer experience efforts should answer. You’re simply the better place to be because you do more, and the journey from initial interest to buying a product is smooth and delightful. A customer knows when they’ve ‘got it good’, so don’t be the business that lets them down.
How You Resolve Issues
When a customer comes to you with a complaint, whether they want to return a product or let you know about an employee’s bad behaviour, how do you respond to them? What action do you take that proves you take these problems seriously, and know how to investigate?
This is the biggest element of customer service to invest in for the future. When you take the time to make amends, and hand out discipline when it’s truly deserved, you’re going to be recognised for your customer service efforts.
What to Remember About the Sales Journey
Your customers need to have the best time when they’re shopping with your business. That’s going to mean something a little different to everyone who visits your website or walks through your door, but you can still tailor your services to suit the general populace at large.
To start with, think about your accessibility, your value of loyalty, and the way your staff have been trained. These are the top three elements that make a difference to your customer service, and it’s going to be very clear in resulting reviews if you don’t make an effort for them!